Ralph Yarl’s GoFundMe raises more than $2.8M after shooting
A GoFundMe page for Ralph Yarl, the 16-year-old boy who was shot in the head for ringing the wrong doorbell in Missouri, has raised more than $2.8 million as of Tuesday afternoon.
A fundraiser started by the teenager’s aunt has drawn nearly 75,000 donors to help pay for her medical expenses after she was shot twice by suspect Andrew Lester, 84, in Kansas City.
The GoFundMe page will raise money for Yarl’s medical bills and therapy, with any extra money going toward his college fund and other expenses.
His aunt, Faith Spoonmore, noted that Yarl’s dream is to attend Texas A&M University to study chemical engineering after visiting the school last summer.
Yarl has since been released from the hospital and is recovering at home, according to the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office Lester was officially charged Monday with assault in the first degree and armed criminal action.
Lester shot Yarl twice — once in the head and once in the arm — with a .32-caliber revolver after the teenager accidentally walked up to his front door Thursday night to pick up his twin brothers, who had actually were waiting for him in a house. Blocks away.
Prosecutor Zachary Thompson added that there was “a racial component” to the case, as Lester is white and Yarl was black.
But he did not elaborate, saying only that no words had been exchanged between the two prior to Yarl’s outburst.
Earlier on Monday, it was revealed that the house where Yarl was shot had signs warning against solicitors and intruders.
A small sign above Yarl’s bell to the right of the doorbell reads, “NO LAWYERS” and another sign by the side fence reads: “This property is protected by surveillance cameras.”
It is unclear if Yarl read any signs when he arrived home at 10:30 p.m.
Prosecutors said the youth never walked through the door.
Lester told investigators he shot Yarl because he was “scared to death” and believed someone was breaking into his home, which would play into Missouri’s “stand your ground” law.
According to the state’s self-defense law, a person can use physical and deadly force against another if they have reason to believe it is necessary to prevent “death, serious bodily injury or a violent felony.” Such strength is essential.
Missouri’s “castle doctrine” specifically allows for such actions to be taken in a person’s home, which would likely come into play in this case because Lester was inside his home when he shot Yarl. who stood outside
It remains to be seen whether Lester will be able to argue that he faced a legitimate threat when Yarl rang his doorbell.